Halloween 2 (1981) | Scream Factory Collector’s Edition | 4K Blu-ray Review


The second installment of 4K reviews of Scream Factory’s Collector’s Edition release of the first five movies in the Halloween franchise. Michael Myers is back, this time in higher details, and he’s still after Laurie, so let’s dive into the second film to see if the sequel is as good as the original.


If after checking out the review, you decide to pick it up, you can find it here*: Amazon

Scream Factory’s Halloween 2, 4K Blu-ray cover art

Tech Specs:

Format(s):UltraHD/4K Blu-ray (BD-100)
Blu-ray (BD-50)
DVD (DVD-9)
Released By:Scream Factory
Release Date:October 5th, 2021
Video Format / Codec:4K: H.265 (HEVC)
BR: MPEG-4 (AVC)
Resolution:4K: 
Native 4K, 2160/24p 
(3280 x 2160 at 23.976 frames/sec, progressive)

BR: 
Full HD, 1080/24p 
(1920 x 1080 at 23.976 frames/sec, progressive)
Digital Intermediate (DI):4K (from 35mm negatives)
High-Dynamic Range (HDR):Dolby Vision, HDR10
Aspect Ratio:2.39:1
Audio Format(s):English (4K/BR):
Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1 (48kHz, 24-bit)
DTS-HD MA 5.1 (48khz, 24-bit)
DTS-HD MA 2.0 (48khz, 24-bit)
Subtitles:English SDH
Packaging:3-disc snap case w/ rigid slipcover*

*Slipcover may only be available on initial pressing
Region Coding:4K: Region-free
BR: Region A (locked)
DVD: Region 1 (locked)

Video Review:

Being the first time this has hit the 4K format, and the look of the first film, I had decently high expectations for Halloween 2, and for the most part, it met them. From a detail perspective, this is definitely the best this film has ever looked, with much higher levels of detail. Costuming details, set pieces, environments are all revealed more throughout the film. Skin textures are more defined and natural looking and in general the movie is fairly sharp with just a few subtle instances of softness.
As with the first film, this also does have grain throughout, but also like the first release, this is very well formed, and non-obtrusive to my eye. It can get slightly heavier in scenes, but nothing I would call distracting.

On the color front, this release definitely packs more punch than the past blu-ray releases but it does not look unnatural. The Dolby Vision enhanced color grade makes everything a little brighter, and a touch warmer than previous releases, but without losing the blue tint of the darker scenes. To me it looks closer to how I would expect it to look, but I also acknowledge that everyone has their favorite look and feel to these films so if you liked the more drab, bluer looks to the older blu-rays then just keep that in mind.

Dark levels and highlight details are very well handled here. This movie is notoriously dark, and now you actually get to see a bit more detail in those shadows, but without being elevated. Whites are bright and crisp and the highlight detail is definitely more noticeable, especially color textures in flames looking great without a whole bunch of blow outs.

The Blu-ray carries over a lot of the great color aspects of the 4K, but it does suffer more in the handling of shadow and highlights, and for some reason also looks markedly softer than I would have expected. I’m not entirely sure why. There are more details present but the sharpness is just a bit lacking compared to even past Blu-ray releases.

Video Score (4K): 4.4 / 5

Video Score (BR): 4.0 / 5

Audio Review:

Similar to the first movie release, we get the default 2.0 stereo track, a 5.1 surround mix and a brand new Atmos mix. Again, the 2.0 track sounds appropriate for the vintage of the movie. The mono track is still string and full sounding, with clean clear dialog (a theme for all 3 tracks). The 5.1 mix, unlike the first film, actually stands pretty well on its own with much more immersion and a fuller bottom end. The new Atmos track takes the strengths of both of these mixes and then moves them up a notch. The environment building in usage of the heights and surrounds is the most noticeable, with appropriate echoes, creaks and “thunks” coming from all around you when appropriate. Bass/LFE was appropriately strong without being over the top, and the musical score is well supported.

The one thing I did notice was a bit of inconsistency as when the film did not call for immersion it became a bit front heavy with less usage of the environmental benefits of usage of the array of speakers available in Atmos. But then when it kicked it, it definitely pulled you deeper into the film. This is not an overly large negative as it overall sounds really good, just something I noticed as I went back and watched scenes and their transitions to subsequent scenes numerous times.

Audio Score (4K/BR): 4.3 / 5

Special Features and Packaging:

Much like the first film, we are also given a really nice collection of special features from audio commentaries to making-of documentaries, trailers, interviews, tv and radio promos, stills and more. Overall they collected a lot of what we have seen on past releases so if you’ve been holding on to older discs for their features there’s a good chance you may be able finally put those up for sale (or donate them to your local library system). In addition to the remastered cut in 4K and 1080p,we also get the television cut of the film on the included DVD.

Packaging for this release is very similar to the first one, with a premium rigid slip cover with custom art, reversible case art and a 3 slot case to keep all three physical discs safe and sound. Overall it looks, displays and functions great.

Features Score: 4.7 / 5

Buy/Upgrade-worthiness:

This is by far the best this film has ever looked so if you are a fan, and even if you own past releases, this one should make it into your collection. It one-ups past releases on all fronts while still offering most of the special features, and audio tracks that often give people reasons to keep multiple copies. Unlike the first film which also had a previous 4K release, this is the first time this one has hit the format and it looks, sounds, (and smells?) great. Even at the premium price, this one is worth picking up.


Buy/Upgrade Recommendation: YES!

If after checking out the review, you decide to pick it up, you can find it here*: Amazon

Summary and Overall Scores:

Scream Factory continued their remaster success into the second of these films and I could not be happier with it. Overall this is a very good release, and other than the softer 1080p presentation, this one has a whole lot going for it.

Experience Score**: 4.3 / 5  (Very Good)

** Experience score does not take into account the quality of the film itself, just the technical presentation, packaging and included features.

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